A TOP North East trade union leader has warned that “simmering anger” over Government spending cuts could result in public protests and unlawful strikes in the region next year.
TUC regional secretary Kevin Rowan predicted that “things will get worse over the next two years because of the Government’s fantasy economic plan” which has seen unemployment in the North East reach a 17-year high.
“We are currently seeing around 2,000 public-sector jobs being axed every month in the North East,” he said. “This will have an increasing impact on the local economy.”
He said that he could now see similarities between the damaging recession of the 1980s with record unemployment and the situation today.
“What particularly worries me is the number of young people out of work,” he said.
“With little hope, I could see more public protests.”
Mr Rowan said he would never condone public riots seen in other parts of the UK, but he could understand why people would want to demonstrate.
“There is growing desperation, growing anger,” he said. “But we must make sure we explain to people that the best way to protest is by demonstrating and filling MPs’ postbags.”